Meatless Meatloaf? Yes please! In this recipe, Giada De Laurentiis delivers on both taste and flavor thanks to the amazing Checca Sauce that goes both in the loaf and is served alongside. Another great meatless option to add to your roster!
Serves 6 – 8
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
3 scallions (white and pale green parts only), chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
8 fresh basil leaves
3 tablespoons olive oil
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
4 cups of baby spinach
1 15oz can of cooked lentils, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups of cooked brown rice
1/3 cup of fresh basil leaves, chopped
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 tsp of salt
1 tsp of freshly ground pepper
2 medium tomatoes, sliced
Make the Checca Sauce by combining all ingredients in food processor and pulse until chopped making sure it does not turn into a puree. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray loaf pan with cooking spray. You can use one 10 in x 4 in loaf pan or two smaller pans.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add 1 tbsp of olive oil. Add the onion, carrot and celery and let cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside. In the same skillet cook the spinach until wilted, about 5 minutes. Drain using a colander and squeeze excess liquid by pressing spinach with a fork. Transfer spinach to a cutting board and coarsely chop. Add to onion mixture.
Add lentils, corn, 3/4 cup of the cheese, rice, basil, eggs and 3/4 cup of the checca sauce. Add the salt and pepper and mix until incorporated. Transfer mixture to loaf pan and top with tomato slices and the remaining 1/4 cup of mozzarella. Drizzle the remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil on top.
Bake for 45 minutes or until the cheese is brown and bubbly. Serve with the remaining checca sauce.
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